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Regional communities stand to benefit from an increase in social and affordable housing construction and maintenance, according to new modelling commissioned by NCOSS.

According to the modelling conducted by Equity Economics, COVID-19 will lead to reduced demand for housing of 38,500 units, resulting in 85,000 jobs and 97,000 SMEs being at risk across NSW.

The new modelling estimates that constructing 5,000 additional social and affordable housing units would support 18,000 construction jobs including in regional areas.

The modelling also estimates that a $500 million investment in repairs and maintenance of social housing stock has the potential to support 4,200 jobs across the state.

NCOSS CEO, Joanna Quilty said the modelling demonstrates that the benefits from a social and affordable housing boom will flow through to regional communities.

“Following on from the bushfires and floods, we now have the COVID-19 recession wreaking havoc on regional communities,” Ms Quilty said.

“We know that people living outside metropolitan areas generally do it tougher and experience higher rates of disadvantage.

“The concern is that some local economies are not going to be able to get out from under this latest disaster so more people in our country towns and rural areas will experience financial distress and poverty.

“Our modelling shows that investing in a social and affordable housing infrastructure program, along with a maintenance program to repair old social housing stock will deliver on multiple fronts.

“It will rapidly provide jobs in the construction industry dispersed across NSW, delivering flow-on benefits for the local businesses that support the industry.

“We are urging the NSW Government to take action that will help regional communities rebuild after the multiple disasters they have experienced.

“This is a prime opportunity for the NSW Government to work with the community housing sector and the construction industry to invest in permanent housing solutions, and support jobs, SMEs, NSW’s vulnerable citizens and regional communities,” Ms Quilty said.

To view the Equity Economics modelling, Supporting Economic Recovery in NSW, visit: www.ncoss.org.au/policy

Media contact: Nick Trainor 0407 078 138

Download the media release (pdf)

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